What part of I HATE you don't you Understand

October 19, 2008
By Fiona Galvin, Herndon, VA

I was on my way to go to the jail cell the government calls school, but at least I wasn’t alone. I had my friends Tash and Lisa to help me brave through the day. Summer vacation just ended and our fun was over, back to the world of homework, sleep deprivation, and self-centered pricks. Yet my parents are still wondering why I wanted to be home-schooled.
“I can’t believe summer’s over already. It feels like we just started it and it’s over.” Lisa complained. “I know what you mean; there are too many school days and not enough vacation.” Tash agreed. “At least we only have few more years of this, ‘til we’re done.” I observed blandly.
“That doesn’t mean we have to enjoy the backstabber’s stupid remarks.” Tash remarked. The backstabber is what we call Rose Cognate the meanest, harshest, most popular girl in the whole school. Last year, when we were freshmen, she moved to Albany, New York we started out as friends. Now don’t get me wrong or anything, when we were friends she wasn’t anything like she is now. She was kind, sympathetic, and trustworthy or at least that’s what I thought. After she learned who was in and who was out, along with some dirt on us, she threw us out like used tissues. It didn’t take her long before she made it look like we threw her out, and she quickly moved quickly up the social ladder until she reached the top that she’s at today.
“Oh look here she comes now, and who’s that with her?” Lisa commented curiously. The boy with her had dark brown hair, deep blue eyes, and a bored inattentive look on his face. “He’s probably her boy toy.” Tash sighed. “Really normally her boy toys are too busy staring and nodding. This person looks like he might actually have a mind.” I stated. As we were giggling at the joke the boy and the backstabber stood in front of us while arguing.
“Oh but you just have to come to my party, Justin.” the backstabber said with a whinny tone in her voice. “I told you already, I don’t want to go to your party. So will you just drop it already?” Justin declared clearly annoyed. “Hey, while you two have your quarrel, mind moving some of us don’t want detention on the first day.” I interrupted loudly while pushing pass them. In return the backstabber gave me an evil glare and Justin stepped aside.
“Wow and here we thought that Clem was the shy one.” Lisa teased. Yeah my name is Clementine, but everyone calls me Clem instead. “I wonder if we’ll see Justin again.” Tash fantasized. “Oh, great Tash has another crush. Now we have to deal with her complain about being single all this year too.” I commented to Lisa. “Hey! I didn’t complain that much.” Tash said jumping to her defense. Before Lisa or I could reply the bell rang and we rushed to class, I meant it when I said I didn’t want detention again on the first day.
When I arrived in homeroom the teacher gave me my schedule told me were to sit. Want to guess who it was next to? If you didn’t guess already that’s your problem not mine, it was Justin. Why did I get the feeling it was going to be a long year? The teacher told us that we would go to are first period, no brainier, that we would come back to home room after the first semester and get our new schedules then. Right afterwards the bell rang and I looked at my schedule, which looked horrific to me. I had AP Algebra 2 with Mr. Rockafella, AP Biology with Mrs. Swartz, AP World History with Ms. Trellis, Latin 2 with Mr. Goldman, Lunch, PE with Mrs. Kraler, English with Ms. Langley, and Creative Writing with Mr. Potts. When did I sign up for all of these AP classes! As I was getting out of my seat, Justin gave me a curious look, before I walked off.
I sat down in Mr. Rockafella’s class and Justin sat down next to me. If I didn’t know any better I would say he was following me. But I did know better, paranoid is Lisa’s department not mine. Mr. Rockafella droned on and on, around the end of class he asked something like is everyone clear on the rules, and we all mumbled yes. Then the bell rang thank goodness I so didn’t want to stay there. I jumped out of my seat to go to my next period.
The rest of the day was pretty boring until I got to Creative Writing. Both Tash and Lisa were in my Creative Writing class, which was a relief because we hadn’t seen each other all day and we thought we weren’t going to see each other most of the time. Tash started to go on about Justin saying things like Justin likes her the same way she likes him, and when I asked her how she knew she told me ‘that when two people find true love they just know’. I hope this guy is a bit nicer then the last guy Tash crushed on. You see last time after Tash got up her nerve and asked the guy out, he told her she was an ugly, obsessive, mad woman he wanted nothing to do with. In return Tash took the nearest item (which happened to be a forty pound desk) and threw it at him. He ended up in the ER room, and Tash ended up suspended.
The bell rang shaking me out of my reminiscing thoughts. “Earth to Clem can you hear me? I’m going to the sport shop do you want to come with, or are you still wandering the unknown planet called your mind?” Lisa asked teasingly. “Are you saying I would pass up a chance to try out some of the merchandise, while you try to skate, and then get some pizza later?” I replied sarcastically. “Never.” Lisa countered.
We continued walking to the sport shop when Lisa stopped mid-step and I bumped into her. “Hey Lisa, mind telling me before you do a sudden stop next time?” Lisa started growling in a low and barely audible voice said “He’s here, that person is here. What's his problem?”
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that Lisa is part werewolf and Tash’s bodyguard. She can smell a person’s scent, and that means that she can tell if someone’s dangerous. Tash is half Fae, fairies for most people, and half werewolf. I guess you could call her royalty. If you think they’re the weird ones you’re in for a surprise, I’m ‘human’ yet I have as much power as Lisa. “Lisa who’s he?” I asked Lisa seriously.
“He is that boy we met earlier. He smells of vampire, I can’t believe I didn’t smell it earlier at school, I was getting careless” Lisa mumbled ashamed. “How did a vampire get in our school when the sun was shining so brightly?!” I exclaimed in anger. “I don’t know Clem, but it’s not our purpose to ask why, we are supposed to protect Tash.” Lisa said sadly shaking her head. Lisa got in her fighting stance in a moment and Justin’s scent flooded my nose. It wasn’t exactly a bad scent just overpowering, but I would never admit it in front of Lisa or Tash. I positioned myself so I wouldn’t be caught off guard.
“Oh it looks like the wolf finally caught my scent, but this is interesting. You smell human, although the wolf and half-breeds scent certainly overpower yours, yet you also caught my scent.” Justin said while looking me over with interest. “You monster don’t you DARE insult either of my friends or I will-” I was interrupted by Justin “Don’t worry you’re friends are big girls. Anyway I’m not here to kill either of them. I’m here to warn you that the vampires who do wish you harm are starting to learn to walk in the sun like I can. I also want you to know that not all the vampires you meet want to kill you.” Justin calmly said.
“What reason do I have to believe you? If you’re on our side why did you hide you scent earlier? Do you really think either of us would fall for a trap like that?” I spat at Justin furious that anyone would sink as low as to pretend they were on our side to hurt my friends. “Don’t mistake my kindness towards you three with being powerless. I can assure you that I most certainly am strong. If I wanted to take you out I would of done it by killing you directly. Only the truly weak would resort to a disgusting tactic like that.” Justin whispered in my ear. What the hell he was probably about two yards ahead of me, and then he was right behind me with one of his arms around my waist!
I started to blush, how could I have not sensed him come behind me, especially since his scent was over-powering! “My that smells really sweet. If I could just have one bite-” Justin said moving my hair off my shoulder. I couldn’t move I remembered Lisa telling me about this if a vampire, correction a really unbearably strong vampire, gets too close to you their overwhelming amount of power can paralyze you, but that only works if they’re a good deal stronger than you. Justin’s fangs were just touching my skin when he pulled back and said “Just kidding, you know how the saying goes save the best for last. You didn’t think I would really take your blood did you?” Justin asked in a mocking tone. “Of course I didn’t.” I lied, of course I did. His fangs had just barely stayed on my skin without piercing. I was terrified that he would bite me. “That’s good it means I’ll have to try harder to convince you next time, but who knows I may slip. We wouldn’t want that now would we.” he replied walking away. Well this sure wasn’t my day now was it.
“Clem are you sure you’re alright?” Lisa asked me worried, well of course she’s worried she thought he bit me. “If you’re talking about being human, I’m 100% human. I know that because I nearly felt like I was going to die of the shock of smelling like a vampire for the rest of my life.” I replied teasing her a little. “Yeah, you’re a hundred percent fine which means I don’t have to give you pizza to make you feel better.” Lisa replied teasing me right back. “I was lying Lisa, I’m terribly ill now may I have some pizza?” I asked sarcastically. “Sure” Lisa said while we were laughing. “Ice-cream might be good too, now that I think about it.” I said smirking. “I pay for the pizza you pay for the ice-cream?” Lisa questioned. “Like always.” I responded.
The next two weeks were pretty boring, and Lisa and I decided not to tell Tash about it what happened unless it was absolutely necessary. Justin didn’t do anything suspicious, well anything more suspicious than being a vampire walking in broad daylight, it’s kind of hard to top. Plus Lisa’s paranoid meter didn’t go off so it was fine. All was well, normal, until the backstabber came and walked straight towards me, Lisa, and Tash. She shoved three invites towards us and said “Justin asked me to invite you. When I told him we weren’t the best of friends. He said it would be a chance to become better ones. I don’t know what you did to him to convince him to make me invite you three, but I’ll find out. And when I do Justin will be mine.” The backstabber spat at us.
As she walked away Tash squealed “Yes Justin must have wanted to see me, and he knows how shy I can be. So he invited you two as well.” Oh yeah I forgot, Tash has a crush on the only vampire alive, currently if he was telling the truth, who can walk in the sun…joy. I gave Lisa a concerned look; I definitely didn’t want to have to tell Tash that her crush was her mortal enemy sent out to kill her. Lisa sent me back an equally concerned look at least she knew that Tash had to be told.
“Why do you two look like that?” Tash accused us. Great just my luck I had to tell her. “Um…Tash, Justin isn’t exactly human he’s-” I started to explain. “So what I’m not human, Lisa isn’t human, and what’s so great about being human anyway. As long as he isn’t a vampire-” now it was Lisa’s turn to interrupt. “That’s it Tash he is a vampire, he almost bit Clem yesterday. We’re not sure why he didn’t try to kill us yet, we need to be careful around him, I’m not even sure if we should keep you in the same school as him, he was able to immobilize me and Clem without trying, we can’t risk doing anything dangerous around him, we might even have to play along with him if needed, do you get it Tash?” Lisa asked in her military style voice. She normally avoided talking to Tash in this tone so it didn’t lose its effect when needed. Heck, I hadn’t even heard her use this tone before ever. Tash was in tears babbling something about losing her one love. I wondered what Lisa meant by the whole ‘playing along if needed’.
“I wonder how we are supposed to reply to his invitation?” I asked completely oblivious to the trouble I was about to get myself into. “I have an idea, since he knows that you are human, we can have you get close to him at the party and he tries anything you knock him out. The only reason he got you last time was because you were shocked and unprepared. If you’re worried about me not being protected me and Lisa will be their too, so I won’t even be leaving your eye site.” Tash brainstormed.
“That’s way too dangerous.” I opposed fiercely, I despised him and they wanted me to get close to him. “That’s a cowardly technique, only the truly weak would resort to a disgusting technique like that!” I continued. “I’m surprised you’re using his words, Clem.” Lisa commented. “Even a vampire can make a point once in a while.” I replied. “No pun intended, I presume.” Lisa smirked as Tash interjected. “I’m not saying you have to get all cuddly with him I’m saying keep an eye on him that’s all. You might not even end up talking to him if all goes well.” Tash explained. “I still need an outfit appropriate for one of the backstabber’s parties.” I concluded sheepishly. I couldn’t believe it; I was actually going to one of the backstabber’s parties, and to add to my disbelief because a vampire invited us. Trust me when I say I so didn’t see that one coming. “I don’t either; I guess we need to go shopping.” Tash concluded happily. Lisa simply shrugged and followed Tash, as I sighed admitting my defeat.
“So, what’s our game plan?” I asked. “For what?” Tash asked. “Simple, you two are telling me to keep an eye on him. That means I’ll need something easy to move around in, but I also don’t want to blow our cover so I definitely can’t go with cargos. What did you guys plan on having me wear?” I asked casually. “You know I didn’t even think about it? What about you Lisa?” Tash confessed. “Nope, I haven’t a clue. This is more of your department Tash.” Lisa replied. “I guess I’ll have to wing it then.” Tash decided. “Oh boy, please don’t make me wear something eccentric.” I amended. “Me eccentric never.” Tash laughed. “I see you guys later I have to go to Rockafella’s class.”

“I might even get an answer or two from pretty boy.” I whispered under my breath. I couldn’t though that would almost definitely blow our cover, but I needed answers. I would endanger Tash and Lisa, but not knowing could be just as dangerous. Justin looked like he was about to ask me something, and as I have recently learned that would not be so good for me and my friends. I started thinking of an excuse not to talk to Justin when Mr. Rockafella walked into class. I sighed with relief at least that was one less thing to worry about.
As Mr. Rockafella droned on and on about formulas and equations I remembered about what Lisa told me to do in order to defend myself against a vampire. It was last summer, the sun was shining so brightly, there wasn’t a cloud in the sky to shield my eyes from the sun-light, a light breeze was blowing through the air off the sea, Tash was wearing a sun-dress dancing on the beach, Lisa was standing in front of me about to give her lecture, and the beach was on a deserted Island in the Bronx.
“Now Clem what are the three most important facts about vampires?” Lisa asked to make sure I was listening. “The three most important facts about vampires is that they burn in sunlight not moonlight, that the average vampire is about the same ability level as an average werewolf, and that when a vampire gets strong enough they can gain an extra ability depending on their personality.” I said trying very hard to not roll my eyes. Me and Lisa had already covered that topic a million times and I wanted to start the actual training already. “Good, now what are some of the more common abilities and what kind of personalities associated with them? After you tell me that I want you to tell me some of the rarer abilities and what personalities they’re associated with.” Lisa continued. “Some of the more common abilities are Empathy, Telekinesis, and Warp. Empathy is associated with the vampires who are cunning and quick, Telekinesis is associated with vampires who are bold and strong, and Warp is associated with the cowardly vampires. Some of the rarer abilities include Premonition, Mind Reading, and Shape-shifting. Premonition is associated with only the wisest vampires, Mind Reading is associated with vampires who are both calm and cynical, and Shape-shifting is associated with vampires who are perfectly balanced in all ways.” I stated trying to hide my impatience.
The bell rang snapping me back to the present, I was honestly starting to hate that bell right about now, and I started wondering what ability Justin had. Although I knew enough about him to guess: he was definitely not a coward so Warp is right out, probably not Telekinesis they tend to be a bit dumber, and I doubted he was one of the wisest vampires, especial since he told me and Lisa that he was a vampire, so that crosses out Premonition. That left Empathy, Mind Reading, and Shape-shifting.
I continued wondering what ability he had through the rest of my classes when I got to Lunch I sat down at my usual seat when I noticed something unusual. There was Justin sitting there talking with a bunch of people and making them laugh. I started to walk away determined to avoid him as long as possible when I heard him call my name. I turned around shocked that he was even there, on a scale of one to ten my level of shock was 13.
Surprisingly enough, Justin was dominating the conversation. I thought that vampires were supposed to be anti-social and uncaring, instead I met the odd ball. The social caring one that loved to annoy me. If had a hammer then and there I would of smashed my head against.
I didn’t so I did the next best thing. I talked to everybody, but Justin, I saw sadness flicker in his eyes. I tried to ignore it, but it wouldn’t leave me alone. Some other people picked up on the hostility and asked “Did you two have an enormous argument or something?” I knew that I would regret it latter, but I wouldn’t couldn’t stand to be mean to Justin. After all he’d been nothing, but polite to me, and this was definitely not the way to return the favor.
“No, I’m just a little tired. Mr. Rockafella gives us way to much homework. Don’t you think so too Justin?” Justin took a moment or two to regain his composer. “Definitely.”
After a while the conversation felt completely natural. The bell rang, I was fuming at it as if glaring at it could make it change its mind, but it was a bell so I grumbled slouching to my next class. I was proud of myself I had been polite to Justin, sort of anyway. I was trying to figure out what I was trying to remember when it slapped me right across the face, I had to Lisa’s house after school to prepare for the party. As if I hadn’t had enough problems we were also doing pull ups in gym. If I hadn’t known any better I would of sworn that the world was out to get me today.

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